MINNEAPOLIS (FOX 9) - It was a terrifying night for some Minneapolis residents, as large groups of young people set off fireworks across the city, sometimes directing the explosives at other people and police officers. The morning after the July 4th chaos, FOX 9 spoke with residents about the Fourth of July overnight chaos.
In a video captured by her neighbor, Erin Gormley, caretaker for her condominium, is seen literally under fire.
"They were shooting explosives at me because I was protecting the property," she recalls.
Armed with a garden hose, Gormley tried to douse shrubs, trees, and even those igniting the fireworks, all while pleading with them to go home and receiving profanity-laced threats in return.
"They had no regard for anything, they were putting fireworks, like explosive ones, under the cars," she recounts.
A group of at least a hundred mostly young men and some young women terrorized James Avenue, one block east of Bde Maka Ska, for nearly three hours. It appeared, she said, highly coordinated with similar incidents across Minneapolis.
"They said, 'Oh my brother went with a group over there, oh my cousin went with a group over there,' like they’d planned it," said Gormley.
On Wednesday, the remnants of the arsenal of fireworks used, some of it very high-powered, were scattered around. Wednesday morning saw a huge effort to clean up around the lake -- even in it -- with debris everywhere.
Gormley filled a trash bag on 36th Street. "I felt afraid. I was not going to leave my front door."
Residents described countless 911 calls, but the police were seemingly overwhelmed. The initial responding squads had little effect.
"It seemed like a lot of anger and people were seeming to enjoy running from the police," said resident Velma Wagner.
Even a state patrol helicopter didn’t seem to help. A more heavily-armed response eventually ended the incident, but not quickly.
"There was just a complete disrespect for everybody," said resident Erin Hewitt. "Once the police came, there was no leaving. They were just hanging out, they weren’t listening to the police whatsoever. It was pretty intense."